One of the top items Kentucky's lawmakers will face in the current legislative session is crafting long overdue tax reform. A back-breaking pension shortfall, along with ever-growing demands on such essential -- and expensive -- services as public education and road maintenance, demand that we come up with new ways of paying for the things we want government to provide.
Unfortunately, too many of our legislators only want to consider revised tax plans that would be "revenue neutral" -- meaning they're OK with a new plan that shifts some burdens around, but not if it collects more money overall. And that won't work.
Any state in our dismal financial condition has two options: spend less or find more to spend. Since we can no longer ignore our huge debts, crippled education system and crumbling infrastructure, spending less is out. That means raising more money. And right now, that can only come from more tax revenue.
Some say we should concentrate instead on attracting businesses. But it's unlikely that many significant businesses will ever look upon Kentucky as a great place to locate until we fix our many disqualifying factors.
That can't happen with a revenue-neutral tax plan. So most, if not all of us, will need to dig a bit deeper from here on if we care about the future of Kentucky at all.
I'm Bill Lamb and that's my Point of View.
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